Dale spot on for Spartans in FA Cup
Guisborough Town 1-2 Blyth Spartans 2
Blyth Spartans came from behind for the second successive round to book their path into the fourth qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup.
A 38th-minute Sean Reid goal, followed by Robert Dale’s 44th-minute penalty on the brink of half-time, turned the game on its head – after an early goal from Trinity’s Shane Clarke gave the hosts the lead on nine minutes.
Two vital diving blocks by Ben Gordon in the second half kept the score respectable as Spartans had numerous chances to extend the lead in the second period.
Along with the safe passage to the next round, Spartans have earned £15,000 for their exploits against Gainsborough.
It was the hosts who dominated the opening salvos and took the lead in the ninth minute. An Alex Byrne set-piece bounced around the penalty area before it fell to Clark, who swivelled on the spot and found the bottom left-hand corner.
Three minutes later the lead was nearly doubled, a mistake allowed Ashley Worsfold in on goal but his audacious effort with the outside of his foot sailed wide.
Spartans began to turn the game on its head when Holmes was scythed down on the edge of the area by Joe Maguire.
Dale stepped up from 20 yards out just left of centre, hitting an effort under the wall, and the base of Jon Stewart’s right-hand upright.
With 38 minutes on the clock Spartans equalised when Reid stroked the ball into the bottom right-hand corner from 18 yards out.
Parity didn’t last long, however, as Wrightson was barged over by Jamie Ture inside the left edge of the penalty area.
Dale stepped up and slotted the ball into the bottom right-hand corner as Spartans took the lead at the break.
The second half saw a procession of Blyth chances, with Trinity defenders throwing their bodies on the line to keep the score respectable .
They produced two fantastic blocks to keep the score down. Then, six minutes from time, the hosts had a good chance themselves when Byrne’s corner was met at pace by Joe Maguire but his header was just wide.
There was still time for Wrightson to be denied Spartans’ third when Gordon again dived in the way of his shot from the right.